By Steve Sucato
What happens when you cross RuPaul with Carol Burnett and classical ballet? You get the world’s most beloved ballet-parody drag company, Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo. Founded in 1974, the New York-based Russian-style troupe with the French name brings its award-winning humor to the Byham Theater for a Pittsburgh Dance Council show Friday, April 5. The Trocks have delighted audiences globally with their faithful renditions of ballet classics and contemporary works — performed by classically trained male dancers in every role — while spoofing ballet’s conventions, accidents and pretenses. The early practice of non-Russian dancers adopting Russian stage names is mocked with monikers like Nadia Doumiafeyva and Mikhail Mypansarov. The troupe performs the Spanish-themed “Paquita,” with music by Ludwig Minkus; founding director/choreographer Peter Anastos’ clever sendup of George Balanchine‘s “Concerto Barocco,” entitled “Go For Barocco,” to music by Bach; and its signature work, “Swan Lake Act II.”
This article first appeared in Pittsburgh City Paper April 3, 2013. Copyright Steve Sucato.